Man nearly dies in Browns River near Courtenay after he and 2 dogs fall in


WATCH: Jonny Mac was enjoying an afternoon along the Browns River with his three bulldogs when he fell in and nearly died. One dog is still missing and presumed drowned.

The frigid water below a 13-metre waterfall is where Jonny Mac continued to look Monday for his beloved Rosie, a one-year-old English Bull Dog that went missing there on Thursday.

“I believe that there is another pool that is in behind that one in the falls where she might be stuck.” said Mac.

But it’s how Rosie went missing that is so gut-wrenching and how the whole ordeal almost took Jonny’s life as well.

They were enjoying the moment at the “Medicine Bowls” a well-hidden spot on the Browns River near Forbidden Plateau. Then in a heartbeat, two of his dogs ended up in the water.

“Blue saw the water and wanted to go for a drink and she slipped and she slid in and the next thing you know Rosie was right in behind her,” added Mac.

Jonny tried to gingerly make his way to the edge but fell into the deep water as well.

“I definitely thought I was a goner that’s for sure and my jacket filled up with water and I was sinking and I looked up above me and there were two sets of legs kicking and yeah I just kind of snapped out of it and boom I came up like a dolphin,” said Mac.

But while saving Blue he watched Rosie disappeared behind him and go over the falls.

Within a few minutes, he was able to get out of the river before being pulled over the falls himself. He then scrambled down below the waterfall but couldn’t find Rosie.

Realizing his phone still worked and not knowing what else to do he posted an emotional appeal on Facebook live asking for help.

He says by the time he made it back to his car with hypothermia setting in, people were coming to help. Someone even had warm, dry clothing.

Even Monday people were arriving to help.

“Got some dog cookies and just calling for Rosie’s name,” said Samantha Boulianne.

“I want to thank everybody for sure, you don’t know who you got until it’s a time of need,” said Mac whose advice to people is to be more aware of their surroundings than he was.

Mac even hired a helicopter to search the river and the Comox Fire Department donated a heat-sensing camera, but the chances of survival are now slim so Mac is asking searchers to stay home.

Dean StoltzDean Stoltz

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